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112th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     112-676

======================================================================



 
             MANHATTAN PROJECT NATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK ACT

                                _______
                                

 September 18, 2012.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Hastings of Washington, from the Committee on Natural Resources, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 5987]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 5987) to establish the Manhattan Project 
National Historical Park in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Los Alamos, 
New Mexico, and Hanford, Washington, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, report favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 5987 is to establish the Manhattan 
Project National Historical Park in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Los 
Alamos, New Mexico, and Hanford, Washington.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    The Manhattan Project was an unprecedented top-secret 
program implemented during World War II to produce an atomic 
bomb before Nazi Germany. In 2001, the Advisory Council on 
Historic Preservation identified the development of the atomic 
bomb as ``the single most significant event of the 20th 
century.'' In 2004, Congress authorized a study of historic 
sites associated with the Manhattan Project to determine the 
suitability and feasibility of including such sites into the 
National Park System. In 2010, the National Park Service 
reported back positive recommendations to create a national 
historical park composed of specific significant locations at 
Hanford, Washington, Los Alamos, New Mexico, and Oak Ridge, 
Tennessee.
    H.R. 5987 authorizes the establishment of the historical 
park whose primary purposes are to improve public understanding 
of the Manhattan Project and its legacy. The legislation is 
designed to enhance public access to the historical park 
consistent with protection of public safety, national security, 
and other aspects of the mission of the Department of Energy. 
While H.R. 5987 establishes the Manhattan Sites Historical 
Park, it first allows a period of time for the Secretary of the 
Interior to further consider which of the specified locations 
will be available to the public and included in the boundaries 
of the park at its establishment, and which locations may be 
incorporated at a later date.
    Unlike other units of the National Park System, this 
historical park will contain facilities currently managed by 
the Department of Energy. In fact, the majority of the areas 
designated for inclusion in the historical park are Department 
of Energy facilities already owned by the federal government. 
These sites will remain under the jurisdiction of the 
Department of Energy, but the interpretive responsibilities 
will be led by the National Park Service. By establishing this 
park, historical facilities currently scheduled to be destroyed 
by the Department of Energy will instead be preserved and made 
available for public visitation. Protecting these facilities 
will reduce federal spending for these facilities' remediation 
by millions of dollars, while the Park Service's interpretative 
responsibilities will be undertaken from within the agency's 
overall administrative budget. For example, the first full-
scale nuclear reactor ever built, the B Reactor at the Hanford 
site in Washington state, would alone cost tens of millions of 
dollars to demolish, while facilitating safe and secure public 
access to the structure can occur under this park at a small 
fraction of the cost. Due to the unique circumstances of these 
facilities and ongoing government missions at these locations, 
the legislation requires coordination, planning and cooperation 
between the Park Service and the Department of Energy to ensure 
safe and secure access to these locations and protection of 
national security. Additionally, the Department of Energy would 
retain responsibility for any environmental remediation.
    H.R. 5987 contains significant private property rights 
protections. The legislation explicitly prohibits condemnation 
and requires written permission of owners before property may 
even be included within the historical park boundary. 
Furthermore, buffer zones are prohibited around the park 
boundaries and land acquisition may occur only by donation or 
exchange.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 5987 was introduced on June 21, 2012, by Congressman 
Doc Hastings (R-WA). The bill was referred to the House 
Committee on Natural Resources, and within Committee to the 
Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands. On 
June 28, 2012, the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and 
Public Lands held a hearing on the bill. On July 11, 2012, the 
Full Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The 
Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands was 
discharged by unanimous consent. No amendments were offered, 
and the bill was adopted and ordered favorably to the House of 
Representatives by unanimous consent.

            COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

    Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee on Natural Resources' oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and 
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be 
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(2)(B) 
of that rule provides that this requirement does not apply when 
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted 
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974. Under clause 3(c)(3) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and section 
403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee has 
received the following cost estimate for this bill from the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

H.R. 5987--Manhattan Project National Historical Park Act

    H.R. 5987 would establish the Manhattan Project National 
Historical Park from eligible sites in Tennessee, New Mexico, 
and Washington. Within one year of enactment, the legislation 
would require the Department of the Interior and the Department 
of Energy to finalize the boundaries of the proposed park and 
to complete an agreement specifying how each department would 
administer properties included in it. H.R. 5987 also would 
require the National Park Service (NPS) to complete a general 
management plan for the park within three years after funds 
have been made available.
    The final costs of implementing H.R. 5987 would depend on 
which lands are chosen for inclusion in the new park unit. 
Based on information from the NPS, CBO estimates that including 
all eligible sites would cost $21 million over the 2013-2017 
period, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts. Cost 
would be lower if fewer sites were included. Enacting H.R. 5987 
would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-
as-you-go procedures do not apply.
    H.R. 5987 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Martin von 
Gnechten. The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
    2. Section 308(a) of Congressional Budget Act. As required 
by clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget 
Act of 1974, this bill does not contain any new budget 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in 
revenues or tax expenditures. The final costs of implementing 
H.R. 5987 would depend on which lands are chosen for inclusion 
in the new park unit. Based on information from the National 
Park Service, CBO estimates that including all eligible sites 
would cost $21 million over the 2013-2017 period, assuming 
appropriation of the necessary amounts. Cost would be lower if 
fewer sites were included.
    3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by 
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goal or 
objective of this bill is to establish the Manhattan Project 
National Historical Park in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Los Alamos, 
New Mexico, and Hanford, Washington.

                           EARMARK STATEMENT

    This bill does not contain any Congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined 
under clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 104-4

    This bill contains no unfunded mandates.

                PREEMPTION OF STATE, LOCAL OR TRIBAL LAW

    This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or 
tribal law.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing 
law.

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

    H.R. 5987 creates a new national park, the Manhattan 
Project National Historic Park, after over 8 years of study. 
The bill's sponsors have correctly represented the 
recommendations made in the National Park Service's Special 
Resource Study/Environmental Assessment. However, the 
legislation contains a crippling provision that impairs the 
ability of the National Park Service (NPS) to include relevant 
sites as part of the Historic Park. Specifically, the 
legislation would only allow the NPS to acquire new sites 
through donation or exchange. This limitation is a concern to 
the National Trust for Historic Preservation which supports the 
legislation but stated that the NPS should have the authority 
to acquire property with monies made available through the Land 
and Water Conservation Fund. During testimony on the 
legislation, the Executive Director of the Los Alamos 
Historical Society indicated that the NPS needed fee 
acquisition authority in order to acquire some properties from 
willing sellers in the future. H.R. 5987 should be amended to 
clarify that NPS can acquire property through purchase from a 
willing seller, donation, or exchange.

                                   Edward J. Markey.
                                   Raul M. Grijalva.
                                   Ben R. Lujan.